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Buying a performance pickup truck is a challenging task. There are now a few options in the market, and most are excellent choices. However, one of the most popular is the 2023 Ford F-150 Raptor. For the new model year, the automaker has added a new R trim level that’s more powerful than a standard model. Is it worth buying? There’s plenty to like about the 2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R, but one flaw makes it a tough purchase.

The Ford F-150 Raptor R has one flaw

Preproduction model with optional equipment shown. Available late 2022. Professional driver on a closed course. Always consult the Raptor supplement to the Owner’s Manual before off-road driving, know your terrain and trail difficulty, and use appropriate safety gear.

If you’re interested in buying the high-flying new 2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R, there’s one flaw to consider. According to CarBuzz, the pickup is nearly perfect. It rated every category close to the top, including exterior design, performance, interior/cargo, infotainment/features, reliability, safety, and even value. However, only a single category received a score under 9/10: fuel economy. Unfortunately, with great power comes terrible gas mileage, and Ford’s performance pickup is no exception.

Wielding a 5.2-liter supercharged Predator V8 engine, the Raptor R produces a whopping 700 horsepower and 640 lb-ft of torque. For reference, that’s about 250 hp more than the base model, which uses a twin-turbocharged V6 engine instead. The EPA estimates are not available for the Raptor R yet, but the standard model is rated for 15 mpg in the city and 18 mpg on the highway. We expect lower ratings for the R variant, which outmuscles the base model in every way.

Luxury pickup truck interior

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2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R interior (pre-production model) | Ford Motor Company

Next, the premium interior is one of the best things about the 2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R. For the price; it should rival the luxury interior of many high-end models. CarBuzz says the performance pickup can do just that. “Aside from a few creature comforts like massage seats and hands-free BlueCruise, the Raptor gets almost every cool piece of tech that’s currently offered in the F-150 lineup,” the publication said.

Standard features for this model are plentiful. A longer list includes but is not limited to a 12-inch infotainment touchscreen, a digital gauge cluster, heated/ventilated suede/leather Recaro seats, heated rear seats, and a power-folding shifter to free up space or a flat desktop surface. In addition, the Ford truck includes genuine carbon fiber trim and Code Orange accents to enhance the sporty look. Inside, a panoramic glass moonroof is an available option.

How does the 2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R drive?

According to CarBuzz, the standard Raptor is “one of the most well-rounded trucks money can buy.” However, the Raptor R takes everything about the standard model and improves upon it. It’s got all the features you’d expect of a luxury truck, plus on-road comfort and off-road capability. Combined, do they make the 2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R the perfect pickup? In short, the Raptor R does everything a regular Raptor does at faster speeds.

Additionally, Ford includes many drive modes for on- or off-road driving. For example, Baja mode is for driving through the sand, which CarBuzz said is used beautifully through some dunes. Next, Fox Live Valve shocks are identical to the Raptor base model. With its massive tires, potent engine, and off-road capability, obstacles that look scary in other trucks or large SUVs are easily overcome. It truly is an off-road beast capable of going anywhere.

1 flaw makes it a tough purchase

Other than fuel economy, there are really only good things to say about the 2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R. That is, as long as you’re OK with paying the massive price tag. According to Car and Driver, the Raptor R costs $109,145, much higher than the standard Raptor at $78,385. Fortunately, Ford’s performance truck can handle just about everything on- and off-road. It’s got the luxury features of an Expedition with the power of a Shelby GT500 and the off-road prowess of a Bronco. The Raptor R is an excellent performance pickup truck if you don’t mind stopping at the gas station frequently.


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